In the sight of God, who gives life to everything, and of Christ Jesus, who while testifying before Pontius Pilate made the good confession, I charge you to keep this command without spot or blame until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, which God will bring about in his own time—God, the blessed and only Ruler, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone is immortal and who lives in unapproachable light, whom no one has seen or can see. To him be honor and might forever. Amen. 1 Timothy 6:13-16 (NIV).
People don’t talk like this anymore. Outside of formal liturgical services, people just don’t use this kind of language anymore, and that’s a shame. There’s something good to be said from hearing someone formally bless you with the power of God. Don’t get me wrong: I like short sermons, and I like it when speakers get to the point. Yet there’s also something grand, something spectacular, about hearing a speaker like Paul put a capstone on his work (this letter) by describing and invoking God’s action in majestic language.
Granted, Paul’s language in this closing doxology is “Pauly.” He could be flowery. He could be formal, and He could be the king of commas and compound sentences. His rousing conclusion here is full of praise in ways that stand out from the rest of his fairly plainspoken letter to Timothy. It’s almost as if he didn’t want to end stop talking. These four verses are actually just two sentences and an ‘amen.’
He’s sending Timothy out into the world (into the ministry) to fight he good fight, to minister to the truly needy, and to stay true to the Lord. Paul is telling his protégé to stay true to his calling from Jesus. He focuses on Jesus in language that describes Him as the Savior King that He is, not just as a man or even a great man. This Jesus isn’t the meek and mild: he’s mighty. Paul focuses on Jesus as the true God, the phenomenal cosmic power God who rules over all.
“Stay true to Him, Timothy. He’s everything and more.”
People don’t talk like that anymore. Indeed, my simple words seem insufficient compared to what Paul handed down to us. Yet, in the sight of God (because He is God), the same mighty Jesus speaks mildly to our individual hearts when He leads us as He will. He did it for Paul; he did it for Timothy; He’s doing it for you and me today.
For further reading: John 8:33-37, 2 Timothy 4:1, 1 Corinthians 1:7, Titus 1:3, Deuteronomy 10:17, Psalm 136:3, Daniel 2:47, Revelation 1:5, Luke 10:7, 1 Timothy 6:13.
Magnificent Lord, all thanks and praise be to You. Thank You for making Yourself known to us in so many ways.